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Sun Salutation

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Sculpture of the 12 asanas of one form of the Sun Salutation[a] in Indira Gandhi Airport, Delhi[1] (figures sculpted by Nikhil Bhandari)
Sculpture of the 12 asanas of one form of the Sun Salutation[a] in Indira Gandhi Airport, Delhi[1] (figures sculpted by Nikhil Bhandari)

Sun Salutation, also called Surya Namaskar(a) or Salute to the Sun[2] (Sanskrit: सूर्यनमस्कार, romanizedSūryanamaskāra),[3] is a practice in yoga as exercise incorporating a flow sequence of some twelve gracefully linked asanas.[4][5] The asana sequence was first recorded as yoga in the early 20th century, though similar exercises were in use in India before that, for example among wrestlers. The basic sequence involves moving from a standing position into Downward and Upward Dog poses and then back to the standing position, but many variations are possible. The set of 12 asanas is dedicated to the Hindu solar deity, Surya. In some Indian traditions, the positions are each associated with a different mantra.

The precise origins of the Sun Salutation are uncertain, but the sequence was made popular in the early 20th century by Bhawanrao Shriniwasrao Pant Pratinidhi, the Rajah of Aundh, and adopted into yoga by Krishnamacharya in the Mysore Palace, where the Sun Salutation classes, not then considered to be yoga, were held next door to his yogasala. Pioneering yoga teachers taught by Krishnamacharya, including Pattabhi Jois and B. K. S. Iyengar, taught transitions between asanas derived from the Sun Salutation to their pupils worldwide.

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Yoga as exercise

Yoga as exercise

Yoga as exercise is a physical activity consisting mainly of postures, often connected by flowing sequences, sometimes accompanied by breathing exercises, and frequently ending with relaxation lying down or meditation. Yoga in this form has become familiar across the world, especially in America and Europe. It is derived from medieval Haṭha yoga, which made use of similar postures, but it is generally simply called "yoga". Academics have given yoga as exercise a variety of names, including modern postural yoga and transnational anglophone yoga.

Asana

Asana

An asana is a body posture, originally and still a general term for a sitting meditation pose, and later extended in hatha yoga and modern yoga as exercise, to any type of position, adding reclining, standing, inverted, twisting, and balancing poses. The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali define "asana" as "[a position that] is steady and comfortable". Patanjali mentions the ability to sit for extended periods as one of the eight limbs of his system. Asanas are also called yoga poses or yoga postures in English.

Hinduism

Hinduism

Hinduism is an Indian religion or dharma, a religious and universal order or way of life by which followers abide. As a religion, it is the world's third-largest, with over 1.2–1.35 billion followers, or 15–16% of the global population, known as Hindus. The word Hindu is an exonym, and while Hinduism has been called the oldest religion in the world, many practitioners refer to their religion as Sanātana Dharma, a modern usage, which refers to the idea that its origins lie beyond human history, as revealed in the Hindu texts. Another endonym is Vaidika dharma, the dharma related to the Vedas.

Surya

Surya

Surya is the sun as well as the solar deity in Hinduism. He is traditionally one of the major five deities in the Smarta tradition, all of whom are considered as equivalent deities in the Panchayatana puja and a means to realise Brahman. Other names of Surya in ancient Indian literature include Aditya, Arka, Bhanu, Savitr, Pushan, Ravi, Martanda, Mitra, Bhaskara, Prabhakara, Kathiravan, and Vivasvan.

Mantra

Mantra

A mantra or mantram (मन्त्रम्) is a sacred utterance, a numinous sound, a syllable, word or phonemes, or group of words in Sanskrit, Pali and other languages believed by practitioners to have religious, magical or spiritual powers. Some mantras have a syntactic structure and literal meaning, while others do not.

Bhawanrao Shriniwasrao Pant Pratinidhi

Bhawanrao Shriniwasrao Pant Pratinidhi

Bhawanrao Shriniwasrao Pant Pratinidhi C.B.E, popularly known as Balasaheb Pant Pratinidhi or Bhawanrao Balasaheb Pant Pratinidhi, was the ruler of the princely state of Aundh of British Raj during the reign.

Aundh State

Aundh State

Aundh State was a Maratha princely state in the British Raj, in the Deccan States Agency division of the Bombay Presidency.

B. K. S. Iyengar

B. K. S. Iyengar

Bellur Krishnamachar Sundararaja Iyengar was an Indian teacher of yoga and author. He is founder of the style of yoga as exercise, known as "Iyengar Yoga", and was considered one of the foremost yoga gurus in the world. He was the author of many books on yoga practice and philosophy including Light on Yoga, Light on Pranayama, Light on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, and Light on Life. Iyengar was one of the earliest students of Tirumalai Krishnamacharya, who is often referred to as "the father of modern yoga". He has been credited with popularizing yoga, first in India and then around the world.

Vinyāsa

Vinyāsa

A vinyasa is a smooth transition between asanas in flowing styles of modern yoga as exercise such as Vinyasa Krama Yoga, Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga and Bikram Yoga, especially when movement is paired with the breath.

Etymology and origins

Bhawanrao Shriniwasrao Pant Pratinidhi provided this double-page guide to the Sun Salutation at the back of his 1928 book The Ten-Point Way to Health: Surya Namaskars as well as in the body of the text, stating that it could be removed for use without damaging the text of the book.[6][7]
Bhawanrao Shriniwasrao Pant Pratinidhi provided this double-page guide to the Sun Salutation at the back of his 1928 book The Ten-Point Way to Health: Surya Namaskars as well as in the body of the text, stating that it could be removed for use without damaging the text of the book.[6][7]

The name Surya Namaskar is from the Sanskrit सूर्य Sūrya, "Sun" and नमस्कार Namaskāra, "Greeting" or "Salute".[8] Surya is the Hindu demigod of the sun.[9] This identifies the Sun as the soul and source of all life.[10] Chandra Namaskara is similarly from Sanskrit चन्द्र Chandra, "Moon".[11]

The origins of the Sun Salutation are vague; Indian tradition connects the 17th century saint Samarth Ramdas with Surya Namaskara exercises, without defining what movements were involved.[12] In the 1920s, Bhawanrao Shriniwasrao Pant Pratinidhi, the Rajah of Aundh, popularized and named the practice, describing it in his 1928 book The Ten-Point Way to Health: Surya Namaskars.[6][7][13][14] It has been asserted that Pant Pratinidhi invented it,[15] but Pant stated that it was already a commonplace Marathi tradition.[16]

Ancient but simpler Sun salutations such as Aditya Hridayam, described in the "Yuddha Kaanda" Canto 107 of the Ramayana,[17][18][19] are not related to the modern sequence.[20] The anthropologist Joseph Alter states that the Sun Salutation was not recorded in any Haṭha yoga text before the 19th century.[21] At that time, the Sun Salutation was not considered to be yoga, and its postures were not considered asanas; the pioneer of yoga as exercise, Yogendra, wrote criticising the "indiscriminate" mixing of sun salutation with yoga as the "ill-informed" were doing.[7]

Elliott Goldberg called Vishnudevananda's 1960 sequence (positions 5 to 8 shown) a "new utilitarian conception of Surya Namaskara", rejecting his guru Sivananda's view of it as a health cure.[22]
Elliott Goldberg called Vishnudevananda's 1960 sequence (positions 5 to 8 shown) a "new utilitarian conception of Surya Namaskara", rejecting his guru Sivananda's view of it as a health cure.[22]

The yoga scholar-practitioner Norman Sjoman suggested that Krishnamacharya, "the father of modern yoga",[23][24] used the traditional and "very old"[25] Indian wrestlers' exercises called dandas (Sanskrit: दण्ड daṇḍa, a staff), described in the 1896 Vyayama Dipika,[26] as the basis for the sequence and for his transitioning vinyasas.[25] Different dandas closely resemble the Sun Salutation asanas Tadasana, Padahastasana, Caturanga Dandasana, and Bhujangasana.[25] Krishnamacharya was aware of the Sun Salutation, since regular classes were held in the hall adjacent to his Yogasala in the Rajah of Mysore's palace.[27] The yoga scholar Mark Singleton states that "Krishnamacharya was to make the flowing movements of sūryanamaskār the basis of his Mysore yoga style".[28] His students, K. Pattabhi Jois,[29] who created modern day Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga,[30] and B. K. S. Iyengar, who created Iyengar Yoga, both learned Sun Salutation and flowing vinyasa movements between asanas from Krishnamacharya and used them in their styles of yoga.[27]

The historian of modern yoga Elliott Goldberg writes that Vishnudevananda's 1960 book The Complete Illustrated Book of Yoga "proclaimed in print" a "new utilitarian conception of Surya Namaskara"[22][31] which his guru Sivananda had originally promoted as a health cure through sunlight. Goldberg notes that Vishnudevananda modelled the positions of the Sun Salutation for photographs in the book, and that he recognised the sequence "for what it mainly is: not treatment for a host of diseases but fitness exercise."[22]

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Bhawanrao Shriniwasrao Pant Pratinidhi

Bhawanrao Shriniwasrao Pant Pratinidhi

Bhawanrao Shriniwasrao Pant Pratinidhi C.B.E, popularly known as Balasaheb Pant Pratinidhi or Bhawanrao Balasaheb Pant Pratinidhi, was the ruler of the princely state of Aundh of British Raj during the reign.

Sanskrit

Sanskrit

Sanskrit is a classical language belonging to the Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European languages. It arose in South Asia after its predecessor languages had diffused there from the northwest in the late Bronze Age. Sanskrit is the sacred language of Hinduism, the language of classical Hindu philosophy, and of historical texts of Buddhism and Jainism. It was a link language in ancient and medieval South Asia, and upon transmission of Hindu and Buddhist culture to Southeast Asia, East Asia and Central Asia in the early medieval era, it became a language of religion and high culture, and of the political elites in some of these regions. As a result, Sanskrit had a lasting impact on the languages of South Asia, Southeast Asia and East Asia, especially in their formal and learned vocabularies.

Surya

Surya

Surya is the sun as well as the solar deity in Hinduism. He is traditionally one of the major five deities in the Smarta tradition, all of whom are considered as equivalent deities in the Panchayatana puja and a means to realise Brahman. Other names of Surya in ancient Indian literature include Aditya, Arka, Bhanu, Savitr, Pushan, Ravi, Martanda, Mitra, Bhaskara, Prabhakara, Kathiravan, and Vivasvan.

Hinduism

Hinduism

Hinduism is an Indian religion or dharma, a religious and universal order or way of life by which followers abide. As a religion, it is the world's third-largest, with over 1.2–1.35 billion followers, or 15–16% of the global population, known as Hindus. The word Hindu is an exonym, and while Hinduism has been called the oldest religion in the world, many practitioners refer to their religion as Sanātana Dharma, a modern usage, which refers to the idea that its origins lie beyond human history, as revealed in the Hindu texts. Another endonym is Vaidika dharma, the dharma related to the Vedas.

Soul

Soul

In many religious and philosophical traditions, there is a belief that a soul is "the immaterial aspect or essence of a human being".

Samarth Ramdas

Samarth Ramdas

Samarth Ramdas, also known as Sant Ramdas or Ramdas Swami, was an Indian Hindu saint, philosopher, poet, writer and spiritual master. He was a devotee of the Hindu deities Rama and Hanuman.

Aundh State

Aundh State

Aundh State was a Maratha princely state in the British Raj, in the Deccan States Agency division of the Bombay Presidency.

Marathi people

Marathi people

The Marathi people or Marathis are an Indo-Aryan ethnolinguistic group who are indigenous to Maharashtra in western India. They natively speak Marathi, an Indo-Aryan language. Maharashtra was formed as a Marathi-speaking state of India in 1960, as part of a nationwide linguistic reorganization of the Indian states. The term "Maratha" is generally used by historians to refer to all Marathi-speaking peoples, irrespective of their caste; however, now it may refer to a Maharashtrian caste known as the Maratha.

Ramayana

Ramayana

The Rāmāyana is a Sanskrit epic composed in India over a period of nearly a millennium, with scholars' estimates for the earliest stage of the text ranging from the 8th to 4th centuries BCE, and later stages extending up to the 3rd century CE. Ramayana is one of the two important epics of Hinduism, the other being the Mahābhārata.

Joseph Alter

Joseph Alter

Joseph S. Alter is an American medical anthropologist known for his research into the modern practice of yoga as exercise, his 2004 book Yoga in Modern India, and the physical and medical culture of South Asia.

Hatha yoga

Hatha yoga

Haṭha yoga is a branch of yoga which uses physical techniques to try to preserve and channel the vital force or energy. The Sanskrit word हठ haṭha literally means "force", alluding to a system of physical techniques. Some haṭha yoga style techniques can be traced back at least to the 1st-century CE, in texts such as the Hindu Sanskrit epics and Buddhism's Pali canon. The oldest dated text so far found to describe haṭha yoga, the 11th-century Amṛtasiddhi, comes from a tantric Buddhist milieu. The oldest texts to use the terminology of hatha are also Vajrayana Buddhist. Hindu hatha yoga texts appear from the 11th century onwards.

Norman Sjoman

Norman Sjoman

Norman E. Sjoman is known as author of the 1996 book The Yoga Tradition of the Mysore Palace, which contains an English translation of the yoga section of Sritattvanidhi, a 19th-century treatise by the Maharaja of Mysore, Krishnaraja Wodeyar III. This book contributes an original view on the history and development of the teaching traditions behind modern asanas. According to Sjoman, a majority of the tradition of teaching yoga as exercise, spread primarily through the teachings of B. K. S. Iyengar and his students, "appears to be distinct from the philosophical or textual tradition [of hatha yoga], and does not appear to have any basis as a [genuine] tradition as there is no textual support for the asanas taught and no lineage of teachers."

Description

Sun Salutation at a public yoga event in Katni, India
Sun Salutation at a public yoga event in Katni, India

Sun Salutation is a sequence of around twelve yoga asanas connected by jumping or stretching movements, varying somewhat between schools. In Iyengar Yoga, the basic sequence is Tadasana, Urdhva Hastasana, Uttanasana, Uttanasana with head up, Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward Dog), Urdhva Mukha Svanasana (Upward Dog), Chaturanga Dandasana, and then reversing the sequence to return to Tadasana; other poses can be inserted into the sequence.[8]

In Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga, there are two Sun Salutation sequences, types A and B.[32] The type A sequence of asanas is Pranamasana, Urdhva Hastasana, Uttanasana, Phalakasana (high plank), Chaturanga Dandasana, Urdhva Mukha Svanasana, Adho Mukha Svanasana, Uttanasana and back to Pranamasana.[32] The type B sequence of asanas (differences marked in italics) is Pranamasana, Utkatasana, Uttanasana, Ardha Uttanasana, Phalakasana, Chaturanga Dandasana, Urdhva Mukha Svanasana, Adho Mukha Svanasana, Virabhadrasana I, repeat from Phalakasana onwards with Virabhadrasana I on the other side, then repeat Phalakasana through to Adho Mukha Svanasana (a third time), Ardha Uttanasana, Uttanasana, Utkatasana, and back to Pranamasana.[32]

A typical[b] Sun Salutation cycle is:

1Pranamasana.JPG
1: Pranamasana
2Urdva Hastasana.JPG
2: Hasta Uttanasana
3Uttanasana.JPG
3. Uttanasana
1Pranamasana.JPG
12: Back to 1
4godhapitham (l‘iguane).JPG
4. Anjaneyasana
2Urdva Hastasana.JPG
11. Hasta Uttanasana
5adho mukha shvanasana.JPG
5. Adho Mukha Svanasana
3Uttanasana.JPG
10. Uttanasana
6Ashtanga Namaskara.JPG
6. Ashtanga Namaskara
4godhapitham (l‘iguane).JPG
9. Anjaneyasana,
opposite foot
5adho mukha shvanasana.JPG
8. Adho Mukha
Svanasana
7urdhva mukha shvanasana.JPG
7.Urdhva Mukha
Shvanasana

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Katni

Katni

Katni officially Murwara is a city on the banks of the Katni River in Madhya Pradesh, India. It is the administrative headquarters of Katni District. It is in the Mahakoshal region of central India. The city is 90 km (56 mi) from the divisional headquarters of the region, Jabalpur.

Yoga as exercise

Yoga as exercise

Yoga as exercise is a physical activity consisting mainly of postures, often connected by flowing sequences, sometimes accompanied by breathing exercises, and frequently ending with relaxation lying down or meditation. Yoga in this form has become familiar across the world, especially in America and Europe. It is derived from medieval Haṭha yoga, which made use of similar postures, but it is generally simply called "yoga". Academics have given yoga as exercise a variety of names, including modern postural yoga and transnational anglophone yoga.

Tadasana

Tadasana

Tadasana, Mountain pose or Samasthiti is a standing asana in modern yoga as exercise; it is not described in medieval hatha yoga texts. It is the basis for several other standing asanas.

Uttanasana

Uttanasana

Uttanasana or Standing Forward Bend, with variants such as Padahastasana where the toes are grasped, is a standing forward bending asana in modern yoga as exercise.

Chaturanga Dandasana

Chaturanga Dandasana

Chaturanga Dandasana or Four-Limbed Staff pose, also known as Low Plank, is an asana in modern yoga as exercise and in some forms of Surya Namaskar, in which a straight body parallel to the ground is supported by the toes and palms, with elbows at a right angle along the body. The variation Kumbhakasana, Phalakasana, or High Plank has the arms straight.

Utkatasana

Utkatasana

Utkatasana, Chair Pose, or fierce pose, is a standing asana in modern yoga as exercise. It was a low squatting asana in medieval hatha yoga.

Virabhadrasana

Virabhadrasana

Virabhadrasana or Warrior Pose is a group of related lunging standing asanas in modern yoga as exercise commemorating the exploits of a mythical warrior, Virabhadra. The name of the pose derives from the Hindu myth, but the pose is not recorded in the hatha yoga tradition until the 20th century. Virabhadrasana has some similarity with poses in the gymnastics of Niels Bukh the early 20th century; it has been suggested that it was adopted into yoga from the tradition of physical culture in India at that time, which was influenced by European gymnastics.

Anjaneyasana

Anjaneyasana

Añjaneyāsana, Crescent Moon Pose, or Ashwa Sanchalanasana is a lunging back bending asana in modern yoga as exercise.

Mantras

In some yoga traditions, each step of the sequence is associated with a mantra. In traditions including Sivananda Yoga, the steps are linked with twelve names of the God Surya, the Sun:[33]

Step
(Asana)
Mantra
(name of Surya)[33]
Translation:
Om, greetings to the one who ...[33]
Tadasana ॐ मित्राय नमः Oṃ Mitrāya Namaḥ is affectionate to all
Urdhva Hastasana ॐ रवये नमः Oṃ Ravaye Namaḥ is the cause of all changes
Padahastasana ॐ सूर्याय नमः Oṃ Sūryāya Namaḥ induces all activity
Ashwa Sanchalanasana ॐ भानवे नमः Oṃ Bhānave Namaḥ diffuses light
Parvatasana ॐ खगाय नमः Oṃ Khagāya Namaḥ moves in the sky
Ashtanga Namaskara ॐ पूष्णे नमः Oṃ Pūṣṇe Namaḥ nourishes all
Bhujangasana ॐ हिरण्यगर्भाय नमः Oṃ Hiraṇya Garbhāya Namaḥ contains the golden rays
Parvatasana ॐ मरीचये नमः Oṃ Marīcaye Namaḥ possesses raga
Ashwa Sanchalanasana ॐ आदित्याय नमः Oṃ Ādityāya Namaḥ is son of Aditi
Padahastasana ॐ सवित्रे नमः Oṃ Savitre Namaḥ produces everything
Urdhva Hastasana ॐ अर्काय नमः Oṃ Arkāya Namaḥ is fit to be worshipped
Tadasana ॐ भास्कराय नमः Oṃ Bhāskarāya Namaḥ is the cause of lustre

Indian tradition associates the steps with Bījā ("seed" sound) mantras and with five chakras (focal points of the subtle body).[34][35]

Step (Asana) Bījā mantra[35][34][c] Chakra[35] Breathing
Tadasana ॐ ह्रां Oṃ Hrāṁ Anahata (heart) exhale
Urdhva Hastasana ॐ ह्रीं Oṃ Hrīṁ Vishuddhi (throat) inhale
Padahastasana ॐ ह्रूं Oṃ Hrūṁ Swadhisthana (sacrum) exhale
Ashwa Sanchalanasana ॐ ह्रैं Oṃ Hraiṁ Ajna (third eye) inhale
Parvatasana ॐ ह्रौं Om Hrauṁ Vishuddhi (throat) exhale
Ashtanga Namaskara ॐ ह्रः Oṃ Hraḥ Manipura (solar plexus) suspend
Bhujangasana ॐ ह्रां Oṃ Hrāṁ Swadhisthana (sacrum) inhale
Parvatasana ॐ ह्रीं Oṃ Hrīṁ Vishuddhi (throat) exhale
Ashwa Sanchalanasana ॐ ह्रूं Oṃ Hrūṁ Ajna (third eye) inhale
Padahastasana ॐ ह्रैं Oṃ Hraiṁ Swadhisthana (sacrum) exhale
Urdhva Hastasana ॐ ह्रौं Oṃ Hrauṁ Vishuddhi (throat) inhale
Tadasana ॐ ह्रः Oṃ Hraḥ Anahata (heart) exhale

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Mantra

Mantra

A mantra or mantram (मन्त्रम्) is a sacred utterance, a numinous sound, a syllable, word or phonemes, or group of words in Sanskrit, Pali and other languages believed by practitioners to have religious, magical or spiritual powers. Some mantras have a syntactic structure and literal meaning, while others do not.

Asana

Asana

An asana is a body posture, originally and still a general term for a sitting meditation pose, and later extended in hatha yoga and modern yoga as exercise, to any type of position, adding reclining, standing, inverted, twisting, and balancing poses. The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali define "asana" as "[a position that] is steady and comfortable". Patanjali mentions the ability to sit for extended periods as one of the eight limbs of his system. Asanas are also called yoga poses or yoga postures in English.

Surya

Surya

Surya is the sun as well as the solar deity in Hinduism. He is traditionally one of the major five deities in the Smarta tradition, all of whom are considered as equivalent deities in the Panchayatana puja and a means to realise Brahman. Other names of Surya in ancient Indian literature include Aditya, Arka, Bhanu, Savitr, Pushan, Ravi, Martanda, Mitra, Bhaskara, Prabhakara, Kathiravan, and Vivasvan.

Om

Om

Om is a sacred sound, syllable, mantra, or an invocation in Hinduism. Om is the prime symbol of Hinduism. It is variously said to be the essence of the supreme Absolute, consciousness, Atman, Brahman, or the cosmic world. In Indic traditions, Om serves as a sonic representation of the divine, a standard of Vedic authority and a central aspect of soteriological doctrines and practices. The syllable is often found at the beginning and the end of chapters in the Vedas, the Upanishads, and other Hindu texts.

Tadasana

Tadasana

Tadasana, Mountain pose or Samasthiti is a standing asana in modern yoga as exercise; it is not described in medieval hatha yoga texts. It is the basis for several other standing asanas.

Ashtanga Namaskara

Ashtanga Namaskara

Ashtanga Namaskara, Ashtanga Dandavat Pranam, Eight Limbed pose, Caterpillar pose, or Chest, Knees and Chin pose is a asana sometimes used in the Surya Namaskar sequence in modern yoga as exercise, where the body is balanced on eight points of contact with the floor: feet, knees, chest, chin and hands.

Bhujangasana

Bhujangasana

Bhujangasana or Cobra Pose is a reclining back-bending asana in hatha yoga and modern yoga as exercise. It is commonly performed in a cycle of asanas in Surya Namaskar, Salute to the Sun, as an alternative to Urdhva Mukha Svanasana, Upward Dog Pose. The Yin Yoga form is Sphinx Pose.

Aditi

Aditi

Aditi is an important Vedic goddess in Hinduism.

Variations

Inserting other asanas

Many variations are possible. For example, in Iyengar Yoga the sequence may intentionally be varied to run Tadasana, Urdhva Hastasana, Uttanasana, Adho Mukha Svanasana, Lolasana, Janusirsasana (one side, then the other), and reversing the sequence from Adho Mukha Svanasana to return to Tadasana. Other asanas that may be inserted into the sequence include Navasana (or Ardha Navasana), Paschimottanasana and its variations, and Marichyasana I.[8]

Chandra Namaskara

Variant sequences named Chandra Namaskar, the Moon Salutation, are sometimes practised; these were created late in the 20th century.[37] One such sequence consists of the asanas Tadasana, Urdhva Hastasana, Anjaneyasana (sometimes called Half Moon Pose), a kneeling lunge, Adho Mukha Svanasana, Bitilasana, Balasana, kneeling with thighs, body, and arms pointing straight up, Balasana with elbows on ground, hands together in Anjali Mudra behind the head, Urdhva Mukha Svanasana, Adho Mukha Svanasana, Uttanasana, Urdhva Hastasana, Pranamasana, and Tadasana.[38] Other Moon Salutations with different asanas have been published.[37][39][40]

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As exercise

The energy cost of exercise is measured in units of metabolic equivalent of task (MET). Less than 3 METs counts as light exercise; 3 to 6 METs is moderate; 6 or over is vigorous. American College of Sports Medicine and American Heart Association guidelines count periods of at least 10 minutes of moderate MET level activity towards their recommended daily amounts of exercise.[41][42] For healthy adults aged 18 to 65, the guidelines recommend moderate exercise for 30 minutes five days a week, or vigorous aerobic exercise for 20 minutes three days a week.[42]

The Sun Salutation's energy cost ranges widely according to how energetically it is practised, from a light 2.9 to a vigorous 7.4 METs. The higher end of the range requires transition jumps between the poses.[d][41]

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Metabolic equivalent of task

Metabolic equivalent of task

The metabolic equivalent of task (MET) is the objective measure of the ratio of the rate at which a person expends energy, relative to the mass of that person, while performing some specific physical activity compared to a reference, set by convention at 3.5 mL of oxygen per kilogram per minute, which is roughly equivalent to the energy expended when sitting quietly.

American College of Sports Medicine

American College of Sports Medicine

The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, is a sports medicine and exercise science membership organization. Founded in 1954, ACSM holds conferences, publishes books and journals, and offers certification programs for personal trainers and exercise physiologists.

American Heart Association

American Heart Association

The American Heart Association (AHA) is a nonprofit organization in the United States that funds cardiovascular medical research, educates consumers on healthy living and fosters appropriate cardiac care in an effort to reduce disability and deaths caused by cardiovascular disease and stroke. Originally formed in New York City in 1924, it is currently headquartered in Dallas, Texas. The American Heart Association is a national voluntary health agency.

Aerobic exercise

Aerobic exercise

Aerobic exercise is physical exercise of low to high intensity that depends primarily on the aerobic energy-generating process. "Aerobic" is defined as "relating to, involving, or requiring oxygen", and refers to the use of oxygen to meet energy demands during exercise via aerobic metabolism adequately. Aerobic exercise is performed by repeating sequences of light-to-moderate intensity activities for extended periods of time. Aerobic exercise may be better referred to as "solely aerobic", as it is designed to be low-intensity enough that all carbohydrates are aerobically turned into energy via mitochondrial ATP production. Mitochondria are organelles that rely on oxygen for the metabolism of carbs, proteins, and fats.

Muscle usage

A 2014 study indicated that the muscle groups activated by specific asanas varied with the skill of the practitioners, from beginner to instructor. The eleven asanas in the Sun Salutation sequences A and B of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga were performed by beginners, advanced practitioners and instructors. The activation of 14 groups of muscles was measured with electrode on the skin over the muscles. Among the findings, beginners used pectoral muscles more than instructors, whereas instructors used deltoid muscles more than other practitioners, as well as the vastus medialis (which stabilises the knee). The yoga instructor Grace Bullock writes that such patterns of activation suggest that asana practice increases awareness of the body and the patterns in which muscles are engaged, making exercise more beneficial and safer.[43][44]

In culture

The founder of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga, K. Pattabhi Jois, stated that "There is no Ashtanga yoga without Surya Namaskara, which is the ultimate salutation to the Sun god."[45]

In 2019, a team of mountaineering instructors from Darjeeling climbed to the summit of Mount Elbrus and completed a Sun Salutation there at 18,600 feet (5,700 m), claimed as a world record.[46]

Discover more about In culture related topics

K. Pattabhi Jois

K. Pattabhi Jois

K. Pattabhi Jois was an Indian yoga guru who developed and popularized the flowing style of yoga as exercise known as Ashtanga vinyasa yoga. In 1948, Jois established the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute in Mysore, India. Pattabhi Jois is one of a short list of Indians instrumental in establishing modern yoga as exercise in the 20th century, along with B. K. S. Iyengar, another pupil of Krishnamacharya in Mysore. Jois sexually abused some of his yoga students by touching inappropriately during adjustments. Sharath Jois has publicly apologised for his grandfather's "improper adjustments".

Darjeeling

Darjeeling

Darjeeling is a town and municipality in the northernmost region of the Indian state of West Bengal. Located in the Eastern Himalayas, it has an average elevation of 2,045 metres (6,709 ft). To the west of Darjeeling lies the easternmost province of Nepal, to the east the Kingdom of Bhutan, to the north the Indian state of Sikkim, and farther north the Tibet Autonomous Region region of China. Bangladesh lies to the south and southeast, and most of the state of West Bengal lies to the south and southwest, connected to the Darjeeling region by a narrow tract. Kangchenjunga, the world's third-highest mountain, rises to the north and is prominently visible on clear days.

Mount Elbrus

Mount Elbrus

Mount Elbrus is the highest and most prominent peak in Russia and Europe. It is situated in the western part of the Caucasus and is the highest peak of the Caucasus Mountains. The dormant volcano rises 5,642 m (18,510 ft) above sea level; it is the highest stratovolcano in Eurasia, as well as the tenth-most prominent peak in the world. The mountain stands in Southern Russia, in the Russian republic of Kabardino-Balkaria.

Source: "Sun Salutation", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2022, November 25th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sun_Salutation.

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Notes
  1. ^ Incorporating Ashtanga Namaskara in place of Caturanga Dandasana
  2. ^ As shown in the Indira Gandhi Airport sculpture, above.
  3. ^ The Bījā mantras are sounds, not translatable words.[36]
  4. ^ Haskell, curious about the wide range of METs in Sun Salutation, repeated the study (Mody) which gave the highest value; using "transition jumps, and full pushups", he obtained "agreement" with 6.4 METs.[42]
References
  1. ^ "Destination Delhi". Indian Express. 4 September 2010.
  2. ^ "Surya Namaskara Salute to the Sun". Yoga in Daily Life. Retrieved 26 September 2022.
  3. ^ Singh, Kritika. Sun Salutation: Full step by step explanation. Surya Namaskar Organization.
  4. ^ Mitchell, Carol (2003). Yoga on the Ball. Inner Traditions. p. 48. ISBN 978-0-89281-999-7.
  5. ^ MacMullen, Jane (1988). "Ashtanga Yoga". Yoga Journal. September/October: 68–70.
  6. ^ a b Pratinidhi, Pant (1928). The Ten-Point Way to Health | Surya Namaskars. J. M. Dent and Sons. pp. 113–115 and whole book. The ten positions of a Namaskar are repeated here and may be detached without damaging the book. The pages are perforated for easy removal.
  7. ^ a b c Singleton 2010, pp. 180–181, 205–206.
  8. ^ a b c Mehta 1990, pp. 146–147.
  9. ^ Dalal, Roshen (2010). Hinduism: An Alphabetical Guide. Penguin Books India. p. 343. ISBN 978-0-14-341421-6.
  10. ^ Krishan Kumar Suman (2006). Yoga for Health and Relaxation. Lotus. pp. 83–84. ISBN 978-81-8382-049-3.
  11. ^ Sinha, S. C. (1 June 1996). Dictionary of Philosophy. Anmol Publications. p. 18. ISBN 978-81-7041-293-9.
  12. ^ Hindu Vishva. Vol. 15. 1980. p. 27. Sri Samarath Ramdas Swami took Surya Namaskar exercises with the Mantras as part of his Sadhana.
  13. ^ S. P. Sen, Dictionary of National Biography; Institute of Historical Studies, Calcutta 1972 Vols. 1–4; Institute of Historical Studies, Vol 3, page 307
  14. ^ Alter 2000, p. 99.
  15. ^ Alter 2004, p. 163.
  16. ^ Singleton 2010, p. 124.
  17. ^ Murugan, Chillayah (13 October 2016). "Surya Namaskara — Puranic origins of Valmiki Ramayana in the Mumbai Court order on Surya Namaskar for Interfaith discrimination and curtailment of fundamental rights". The Milli Gazette-Indian Muslim Newspaper. Retrieved 13 October 2016.
  18. ^ sanskrit.safire.com, Aditya Hrudayam with English translation
  19. ^ Translation of Ramayana by Griffith
  20. ^ Mujumdar 1950.
  21. ^ Alter 2004, p. 23.
  22. ^ a b c Goldberg 2016, pp. 329–331.
  23. ^ Mohan, A. G.; Mohan, Ganesh (29 November 2009). "Memories of a Master". Yoga Journal.
  24. ^ Anderson, Diane (9 August 2010). "The YJ Interview: Partners in Peace". Yoga Journal.
  25. ^ a b c Sjoman 1999, p. 54.
  26. ^ Bharadwaj, S. (1896). Vyayama Dipika | Elements of Gymnastic Exercises, Indian System. Bangalore: Caxton Press. pp. Chapter 2.
  27. ^ a b Singleton 2010, p. 175-210.
  28. ^ Singleton 2010, p. 180.
  29. ^ Donahaye, Guy (2010). Guruji: A Portrait of Sri K Pattabhi Jois Through The Eyes of His Students. USA: D&M Publishers. ISBN 978-0-86547-749-0.
  30. ^ Ramaswami 2005, pp. 213–219.
  31. ^ Vishnudevananda 1988.
  32. ^ a b c Hughes, Aimee. "Sun Salutation A Versus Sun Salutation B: The Difference You Should Know". Yogapedia.
  33. ^ a b c "Surya Namaskara". Divine Life Society. 2011. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  34. ^ a b Omar, Shazia (27 December 2016). "Sonic salutations to the sun". Daily Star.
  35. ^ a b c Hardowar, Radha (June 2018). "Surya Namaskar" (PDF). Shri Surya Narayan Mandir.
  36. ^ Woodroffe, Sir John (2009) [1919]. ŚAKTI AND ŚĀKTA ESSAYS AND ADDRESSES ON THE ŚĀKTA TANTRAŚĀSTRA (3rd ed.). Celephaïs Press. p. 456. ŚAKTI AS MANTRA intoned in the proper way, according to both sound (Varṇ a) and rhythm (Svara). For these reasons, a Mantra when translated ceases to be such, and becomes a mere word or sentence. By Mantra, the sought-for (Sādhya) Devatb appears, and by Siddhi therein it had vision of the three worlds. As the Mantra is in fact Devatā, by practice thereof this is known. Not merely do the rhythmical vibrations of its sounds regulate the unsteady vibrations of the sheaths of the worshipper, but therefrom the image of the Devatā, appears. As the Bṛ had-Gandharva Tantra says (Ch. V):— Śrinu devi pravakṣ yāmi bījānām deva-rūpatām Mantroccāranamātrena deva-rūpam prajāyate.
  37. ^ a b Ferretti, Andrea; Rea, Shiva (1 March 2012). "Soothing Moon Shine: Chandra Namaskar". Yoga Journal.
  38. ^ Mirsky, Karina. "A Meditative Moon Salutation". Yoga International. Retrieved 23 July 2019.
  39. ^ Venkatesan, Supriya. "Moon Salutations". Yoga U. Retrieved 23 July 2019.
  40. ^ Tomlinson, Kirsty. "Moon Salutation sequence". Ekhart Yoga. Retrieved 23 July 2019.
  41. ^ a b Larson-Meyer, D. Enette (2016). "A Systematic Review of the Energy Cost and Metabolic Intensity of Yoga". Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise. 48 (8): 1558–1569. doi:10.1249/MSS.0000000000000922. ISSN 0195-9131. PMID 27433961. The review examined 17 studies, of which 10 measured the energy cost of yoga sessions.
  42. ^ a b c Haskell, William L.; et al. (2007). "Physical Activity and Public Health". Circulation. 116 (9): 1081–1093. doi:10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.107.185649. ISSN 0009-7322. PMID 17671237.
  43. ^ Ni, Meng; Mooney, Kiersten; Balachandran, Anoop; Richards, Luca; Harriell, Kysha; Signorile, Joseph F. (2014). "Muscle utilization patterns vary by skill levels of the practitioners across specific yoga poses (asanas)". Complementary Therapies in Medicine. 22 (4): 662–669. doi:10.1016/j.ctim.2014.06.006. ISSN 0965-2299. PMID 25146071.
  44. ^ Bullock, B. Grace (2016). "Which Muscles Are You Using in Your Yoga Practice? A New Study Provides the Answers". Yoga U. Retrieved 22 July 2019.
  45. ^ "Surya Namaskar in the words of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois". Discover the Purpose. Retrieved 20 July 2019.
  46. ^ "Suryanamaskar and Yoga Atop of Mountain Summit (18600 Feet)". World Records India. 3 October 2019. Archived from the original on 3 October 2019.

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